UPDATE 11/26/2020: California State Athletic Commission executive director Andy Foster confirmed on November 24th that the Tyson vs Jones Jr fight will be fought under exhibition rules. This means that there won’t be a winner announced after the fight and knockouts won’t be allowed either. This caused many sportsbooks to withdraw the event from their listings. If you have made a bet, and the market was canceled, your stake will be paid back to your betting account. Some proposition bets could still be available for betting.
- Date & Location: Saturday Nov. 28 @ Staples Center in Los Angeles, Calif.
- Odds: Mike Tyson (-200) vs. Roy Jones Jr. (+150) via Bovada
- Prediction: Tyson (decision)
On Saturday, November 28, two legendary boxers face off in an exhibition bout at Staples Center. That contest features Mike Tyson and Roy Jones, Jr.
Tyson hasn’t fought in over 15 years. The last time he entered the ring was June 2005. Tyson quit on his stool after the sixth round of a fight against Kevin McBride. Tyson won his first 19 fights by stoppage. That streak to broke Rocky Marciano’s record for most consecutive KO/TKO victories to start a career. “Iron Mike” also became the youngest heavyweight fighter to win that title at 20. Tyson went 5-5-0-2 in his last 12 fights after going 45-1.
Jones last fought in 2018 when he scored a unanimous decision win over Scott Sigmon. Before that, Jones defeated Bobby Gunn via TKO. Both victories earned Jones a title. Jones finished his career on a 12-1 run. Jones won titles at super middleweight, middleweight, light heavyweight, heavyweight and cruiserweight.
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TYSON vs. JONES ODDS
|Fighter||Odds (via My Bookie)|
|Roy Jones Jr.||+155|
TYSON vs. JONES RULES
- Eight rounds of two minutes each
- Competing for the WBC Frontline Battle Belt
- WBC judges will score bout
- Judges will score remotely
- Three former champions will serve as judges
- California State Athletic Commission will oversee, regulate, and sanction
- 12-ounce boxing gloves
- No headgear
- Exhibition bout
- Referee will be veteran referee Ray Corona
According to CSAC executive director Andy Foster, “It’s an exhibition. They can exhibit their boxing skills, but I don’t want them using their best efforts to hurt each other. They’re going to spar hard, but they shouldn’t be going for a knockout. This isn’t a record-book type of fight. This is not world-championship boxing right now. It’s not what this is. People shouldn’t be getting knocked out. The public can see what kind of shape Roy and Mike are still in.”
Foster added, “‘you get cut, it’s over.’
TYSON vs. JONES PREDICTION & PICK
Although this matchup is an exhibition, I expect these two to take this fight to the limits of what the CSAC would call hard sparring. I think these two will go hard to the body, but ease off on the headshot to not cross the line. As Jones said, “You think he’s going to go out there and say, ‘Oh, I can’t hit too hard because the guy from the commission is going to be angry?’ No. No way is he going to do that. This is a fight and I have to be ready for that.”
I think the two-minute rounds will help Tyson stay fresh. There’s little doubt that he still has power and speed in his hands, but even in his younger days, he ran out of gas. In his final 11 fights, Tyson only went into the eighth round once and he lost that fight to Lennox Lewis in 2002. Jones finished his career going 10 rounds, eight rounds and 10 rounds and winning those fights in 2016, 2017, and 2018.
If this fight was scheduled for three-minute rounds, I would lean toward the boxing of Jones, but with the short rounds and eight round limit, I think Tyson will have enough gas to take a decision.
Prediction: Tyson at -185 at InterTops.
BETTING VALUE WITH TYSON
I am picking Tyson by decision, but that pick relies a lot on him keeping his composure and preventing himself from headhunting and going for the knockout. I think the Tyson of today is in a much better headspace than the Tyson that fouled out of previous fights and I also believe he is not looking at this as a one-off but as an opportunity to make some decent money. With that, I think he goes hard, but not so hard as to jeopardize future income. There is a chance for him to run out of gas and for Jones to take the victory based on his boxing skills, but that means Tyson will have to fade quickly. There’s also a chance that Tyson catches Jones with a body blow for the knockout.
WHO HAS THE EDGE?
There’s no doubt that Tyson is the more powerful fighter in this bout. There’s also little doubt that Jones is the better boxer. As mentioned above, this one is going to come down to cardio and the ability to pace. If Tyson is smart, he will not throw every punch with knockout intentions, instead, he should use his power sparingly so he does not empty his tank. If he does that, Jones will box him up for however long remains in the fight.
TALE OF THE TAPE: TYSON vs. JONES
|Mike Tyson||Category||Roy Jones Jr.|
WHAT’S AT STAKE
There’s a lot more at stake for Tyson than Jones in this bout. He plans on using this fight as a launching pad for his Legends Only League a loss to Jones or a bad showing could see this being the first a last presentation for the promotion.